Nema shuts down 2 Kibos Sugar plants over toxic waste

Monday February 25 2019

Kibos river

River Kibos. National Environment Management Authority has shut down two plants at Kibos Sugar Company alleged pollution. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

JUSTUS OCHIENG'
By JUSTUS OCHIENG'
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The National Environment Management Authority (Nema) has shut down two plants at Kibos Sugar Company in Kisumu over alleged pollution.

This follows claims the miller has been discharging effluent to River Kibos which drains into Lake Victoria.

On Monday, Kisumu County Nema director Tom Togo told Nation they had stopped operations of a distillery and paper mill plants in the factory.

“The two plants were responsible for the discharge of effluent into the local river. Until they comply, the two plants shall remain shut,” Mr Togo said.

'PROTECT PEOPLE'

Residents have been up in arms against the factory, saying the effluent dumped into the river was harmful to them and their livestock.

Kisumu Woman Representative Rozah Buyu cautioned against blanket condemnation, saying the firm has employed many local residents.

But she warned against continued dumping of toxic waste into the river.

“Any manufacturing company must ensure they take all steps to ensure peoples’ health is not put at risk. On the other hand, if a problem has been identified, we must take all precautions to ensure a stop is put to any further risk on peoples’ lives. As a people, however, we must not be irrational so that we throw out a baby with a bucket,” Ms Buyu said.

TOBIKO WARNING

Environment CS Keriako Tobiko last week assured residents that his ministry will take stern action against the factory if it is found that it has been discharging dangerous chemicals into the river.

“Time is up for those who think that they are untouchable, no one will be spared,” Mr Tobiko said.

Kisumu Governor Anyang’ Nyong’o, while acknowledging that Kibos Sugar has been facing difficulty handling its waste, said the issued needs to addressed definitively.

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